Firefox Headlines (August 13th, 2021)

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Amy Churchwell

Aug 13, 2021, 1:17:05 PM8/13/21
Hey Firefox fans!

The Firefox Desktop team met this week to share updates on some of the great things we've been working on.

Thanks to Mike Conley and Harry Twyford for putting these notes together with me.


Friends of the Firefox team

For contributions from July 28th to August 10th 2021, inclusive.


Resolved bugs (excluding employees)

Fixed more than one bug

  • Antonin Loubiere

  • Ava Katushka

  • Kajal Sah

New contributors (🌟 = first patch)

Project Updates

Add-ons / Web Extensions

Addon Manager & about:addons
  • Removed an old about:config pref (extensions.webextPermissionPrompts) that was making AMO fall back to a behavior not officially supported from a long time if changed, we introduced the pref while the extensions permission prompt was being implemented and it was now only used in a few tests (without serving any other purpose) - Bug 1720845

WebExtensions Framework
  • Fixed an issue related to the extension devtools panel being disabled when the same extension requests an unrelated optional permission (the users affected could still reenable the devtools panel from the DevTools Settings panel UI without reinstalling the extension, but not all users are aware of that API and so we uplifted the fix also on Firefox 91) - Bug 1722145

  • Fixed a regression related to more strict validations for Manifest Version 3 manifest keys used in Manifest Version 2 extensions, some extension developers did submit to AMO extensions with manifest.json files including the Manifest Version 3 manifest keys (which are unsupported in practice) along with the Manifest Version 2 keys, by leveraging the fact that we do only warn for unexpected top level manifest keys. The fix (landed in Firefox 92 and uplifted to Firefox 91) does ensure that we only warn on the unexpected manifest keys even when they are defined for Manifest Version 3 extensions - Bug 1722966

  • Thanks to Florian, starting from Firefox 92 the Firefox Profiler will show markers for the extensions API calls and API events. This is going to be really helpful to more easily investigate perf issues related to the WebExtensions APIs (and also for non-perf issues)! - Bug 1716343

- [Screenshot]


Downloads Panel

  • Lots of updates from Outreachy intern, Ava (available behind the pref):

    • The  “Save file as” dialog shows instead of the “UnknownContentType” dialog when the user has Firefox configured to always ask where to save files (bug 1719901)

    • Fixed an issue where saving files directly to disk would immediately open the file when it’s finished downloading (bug 1719900)

    • Updated telemetry for opening a file via clicking an in-progress download from the Downloads Panel (bug 1718782)

    • Files opened by an application are saved to the user configured directory (bug 1714107)

    • Continuing work on UX for preventing download spam (bug 1711049)

Form Autofill

Password Manager


Performance Tools

  • Firefox Profiler now supports importing dhat profiles. Example profile: 

  • Firefox Profiler creates more compact URLs for profiles with lots of tracks now.

  • You can use the “*” button on your keyboard to expand all call nodes in the call tree.

  • Now screenshots will let you know when a window is being destroyed. Example profile: 

- [Screenshot]


  • Screenshot example of a second and third screenshots window being destroyed at specific times.

  • An issue related to the activity graph that makes it blurry after resize has been fixed.

  • Enabled 4 more locales: el, es-CL, ia and zh-CN. We have 10 locales in total that are enabled in the production of now! Thanks to everyone who contributed to localization work!


Search and Navigation

  • Drew worked on a patch to experimentally allow the heuristic result to be hidden (Bug 1723158). This enables future experimental work with surfacing relevant “Top Hit” results.

Below the fold

  • [gijs] Referencing chrome: or resource: URIs that aren’t packaged will now cause crashes in tests, which will get you backed out if landing new instances of those problems. This should help automation catch dangling references when images/CSS/JS files get removed, typos when adding new stuff, etc.

    • Obviously this only helps if you have automated tests exercising the code in question, which you should!

This information, including all of the previous updates, are fully available in this doc:

Also note that I'm really just synthesizing and humanizing the stuff that's on the Wiki, which is freely available from here:, so check that out if you want the source material. It'll also be posted (minus the Below the Fold stuff) to the Nightly blog.

Finally, if there's a Firefox-ish team that you feel isn't being represented here, please let them know about the above meeting so we can get their updates.

Keep on rockin' the free web,


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